HUL Q4 net rises 11% to Rs 872 crore

HUL Q4 net rises 11% to Rs 872 crore

HUL Q4 net rises 11% to Rs 872 crore

FMCG major Hindustan Unilever on Monday reported a 10.77 percent jump in net profit to Rs 872 crore for the quarter ended March 2014 from Rs Rs 787 crore for the comparable quarter a year ago.

During this quarter, HUL's total income from operations rose 10 per cent to Rs 7,245 crore from Rs 6,572 crore in March 2013, while net sales grew 9.7 per cent at Rs 7,094 crore compared to Rs 6466 crore on a yearly basis, thereby numbers exceeded D-Street expectations. 

Analysts were expecting HUL's net around Rs 850 crore and income was seen growing over 8.0 per cent to Rs 7000 crore.

The FMCG major’s margin increased marginally at 15.2 percent from 15 percent year-on-year, while EBITDA was at Rs 1078 crore versus Rs 972 crore in the corresponding quarter last fiscal. The company announced a dividend of Rs 7.50 per share.

Together with interim dividend of Rs 5.5 per share, total dividend for the entire fiscal stands at Rs 13 per share.

The company saw an exceptional gain of Rs 66 crore compared to gains of Rs 9.4 crore year-on-year which includes sale of properties worth Rs 15.6 crore.

Its tax expense grew to Rs 351 crore from Rs 232.4 crore (Y-o-Y). Ad spends as a percentage of sales was at 12.1 per cent.

Addressing a press conference, the management said HUL has seen lower level of promotional ad spends this quarter.

The management said, "For few quarters now, FMCG markets continue to remain slow both in terms of volume and value during this quarter. In particular discretionary categories and premium segments of our categories were under pressure.

Input costs also were firm with the palm oil clearly on the rise and comparative intensity remained at high levels.

So in this challenging emvironment, we are pleased to have delivered another quarter of comparative and profitable growth.Our domestic consumer business grew by 9 percent with 3 percent underlying volume growth."

Segment wise revenue, the domestic consumer business grew at 9 per cent during the quarter, ahead of market, with 3 per cent underlying volume growth.

The company reported modest yaerly growth across categories at 9.6 per cent in soaps and detergents, 8.3 percent in personal products, 7.5 per cent in beverages and 12.7 in foods category.

HUL's Q4 personal products EBIT margin was at 25 per cent versus 25.8 per cent (Y-o-Y) with revenue growing to Rs 1983.3 crore. Soaps and detergents revenue stood at Rs 3497.1 crore compared to Rs 3191.4 crore (Y-o-Y) while EBIT margin was flat at 12.1 per cent.

In oral care, the company had made significant investments to sustain competitiveness in the category.

While Close Up grew in the quarter, Pepsodent was impacted by the high promotional intensity in the market. HUL said its oral care business faced a mixed performance in Q4, while plans are underway to step up ad spends in the category.

"Elevated competitive intensity in Oral Care would keep advertising and promotion spends high. However, we note that media inflation is relatively benign due to pressure on prices post decline in non-Consumer GRPs," said broking outfil Motilal Oswal in a note.

Meanwhile, HUL stock closed this day at Rs 580.60, down Rs 0.10, or 0.02 percent on the BSE.

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